Teeth whitening has become an increasingly popular service over the past couple of years, with more and more people looking to improve the cosmetic appearance of their teeth.
Teeth whitening is relatively painless and can lead to some impressive results without weakening the teeth. However, although teeth whitening is a solution for the majority of patients, there are certain scenarios where it will be less effective or isn’t advised.
Is Tooth Whitening Right for me?
For the majority of people, teeth whitening treatments will provide noticeable results. However, before you undertake any teeth whitening treatment, you should consult with your dentist to confirm that you are a good candidate.
Your dentist should assess the state of your teeth and gums prior to you using any teeth whitening product. This is because, although the treatment is safe, it can lead to temporary tooth sensitivity and gum irritation.
Who Can’t Have their Teeth Whitened?
There are some circumstances where teeth whitening isn’t recommended or may not be successful.
Teeth whitening is not recommended for children under the age of 16. This is because the pulp of the teeth (in the centre of the tooth) is enlarged until this age and whitening the teeth could irritate this pulp, causing sensitivity.
Teeth whitening is also not recommended for women who are pregnant or lactating.
Likewise, if you have sensitive teeth and gums, receding gums or defective restorations, then you should consult with your dentist before you undertake any teeth whitening treatment. If your teeth have any signs of decay or worn enamel, then you may also experience sensitivity if you undertake treatment.
Additionally, you should note that if you have crowns or veneers, then these will not be whitened by the teeth whitening process.
How Are Teeth Whitened?
There are various methods available for whitening teeth, but the most popular are the take-home kits. Each kit is custom-made to fit a patient’s mouth.
Your dentist will create an impression of your teeth, making a custom-fitted tray. This tray is then filled with a whitening gel that is placed in the mouth for a pre-specified period of time. This can be for as little as an hour or for as long as overnight, depending on the gel.
How Long Does Teeth Whitening Last For?
Teeth whitening is a permanent change to the tooth. However, over an extended period of time, you may notice that your teeth begin to fade slightly. If this is the case, your teeth can be whitened again using additional whitening gel.
How long teeth whitening lasts for will vary from person to person. For example, if you’re a smoker or someone who eats and drinks products that will regularly stain teeth, then the effect is less likely to last as long. Where possible, try to avoid tea and coffee, red wine and cigarettes.
However, if you brush and floss your teeth regularly and maintain a good oral hygiene routine, then your teeth should remain bright and white.
Generally speaking, should you take good care of your teeth following the treatment and visit your dentist for regular check-ups, then the effects should last for 3-5 years.
If you’re interested in having your teeth whitened, then please call us on 07 3300 1277 to discuss your options and schedule an appointment for a consultation, where one of our experienced dentists can evaluate your options.